SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Eric Brown, Bob Gourley, Sandi Mappic, RealWire News Distribution, Kevin Benedict

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Snowballing Car Hire Costs for Feb Half Term Skiers

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM -- (Marketwired) -- 02/03/14 -- Hiring a car for skiers no longer means a quick pick up of the keys but rather an avalanche of additional costs at the rental desk. This February half term skiers could be parting with up to GBP 184 for a week's excess car hire insurance when they arrive to collect their car, plus GBP 42 for tyre and windscreen protection, GBP 84 for an extra driver (GBP 227 if they're under 21 yrs), a sat nav for GBP 102, snow chains costing GBP 75 and a child's car seat for GBP 102(i). researched the six popular ski gateways of Geneva, Turin, Innsbruck, Barcelona, Sophia (Bulgaria) and Inverness to see how a traveller's costs snowballed on picking up their hire car. (Avis, Sixt, Europcar and Hertz were researched for the hire of a medium compact car, 15 - 22 Feb 2014).

Excess Car Hire Insurance: Without excess insurance a customer could be liable for charges of up to GBP 2300 (e.g. the excess amount in Turin with Europcar) if the hire car is damaged or stolen, even if it's not the hirer's fault. E.g., a medium compact car hired from Turin costs GBP 143 with Hertz for the week (15 - 22 Feb) while its excess car hire policy is an additional GBP 184 - a pricey GBP 26 a day and over eight times more expensive than an independent policy from an insurance company like, which costs from GBP 2.99 a day, a saving of GBP 163.

The average cost of car hire excess insurance charged by the rental companies across all six destinations is GBP 106. However some of these excess policies require an additional policy to cover the car's tyres and windscreen, e.g., Sixt charge GBP 21 for a tyre and windscreen policy in Innsbruck, GBP 27 in Geneva and rising to GBP 42 in Barcelona - these are all on top of its basic excess policies.

An excess car hire insurance policy is GBP 21 for the week (or GBP 39.99 for an annual policy) and includes vulnerable parts of a vehicle providing up to GBP 6000 of protection cover.

Snow Chains: Expect to pay around GBP 50 for snow chains. NB. Sixt make snow chains a compulsory cost in the destinations of Geneva, Sophia, Innsbruck and Turin. Travellers need to make sure they know the rules and regulations of the country they're hiring in, otherwise they (and not the rental company) could face a fine.

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